Carl Icahn - Master of the Art of Investing

Carl Icahn is a high profile American business magnate, investor and philanthropist. He is listed as number 55 on Forbes’ ‘World’s Billionaires’ list (2017), with an estimated USD$16.8 billion worth in assets.

Due to his business strategies and success stories, Carl Icahn has developed a reputation for raising the value of the shares of the companies in which he invests. The rise in stock price that follows Icahn’s interest in a company coined the famous phrase – the “Icahn Lift”.

Net Worth

$
Billion USD

Global rank

150 th
Billioners List

* Stats taken from Forbes.com. Updated on  10/01/18

Country rank

1 th
USA Richest

The “Icahn Lift”

About Carl Icahn

Icahn was born in 1936 in Queens, New York, in a neighborhood that was characterized by poverty and minority groups. Despite the discouraging environment, his reality was gradually changing thanks to his ambitious character and educational success. He proved his parents and teachers wrong when graduating from Princeton in 1957, with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy. Icahn continued his studies in medicine but had to drop these after two years, and instead joined the army. However, the influence his studies had on him is evident in his career as an investor, which he launched in 1961.
 

Icahn’s first job in the world of finance was as a broker in Dreyfus & Co. After a severe drop in the stock market, from which Icahn gained a lot of experience, he changed jobs and quickly moved up the scale of management. He soon made enough money to be trusted with a substantial loan from his uncle, which he used to open his own firm: Icahn & Co. The firm centered on takeover arbitrage and options strategies, and Carl Icahn was beginning to make millions of dollars a year. The next step in his career soon followed and in 1978 he began to take controlling positions in different private companies, including Western Union, Revlon, Texaco, USX, Netflix, Blockbuster, and many others. From then on Icahn was known for his assertive approach to business, which gained him wealth and fame.

In 1980 he took a major position in Trans-World Airlines (TWA), with the intention of buying it out of its debt in exchange for the bulk of its shares. After a struggle with the company’s executives, Icahn became its CEO and was now expected to save it from bankruptcy. Despite the challenge, in 1991 the company emerged from bankruptcy, after which Icahn resigned. Meanwhile, he continued buying up stakes and accumulating wealth, and in 2004 started his own hedge fund, Icahn Partners. During the years that followed the shrewd businessman continued with his shareholder activities and investments, while taking head positions in Netflix, eBay, Apple, Family Dollar, and Clorox. Due to his business strategies and success stories, Carl Icahn has developed a reputation for raising the value of the shares of the companies in which he invests. The rise in stock price that follows Icahn’s interest in a company coined the famous phrase – the “Icahn Lift”.

Philanthropy, Interests and Personal Life

The business acquisitions made by Icahn are diverse and plentiful, but his interests do not stop with the world of finance. As a personal interest Carl has invested in horse racing. In 1985 he established a horse breeding enterprise called Foxfield, which he sold in 2004.

Icahn has made considerable contributions to numerous social causes over the years — from education, through science, to health organizations. Notable examples are the Icahn houses, which provide shelter for the homeless people of New York, and the Icahn Scholar Program which provides full funding for students.

In 1999 Icahn was married for the second time, and has two children from his first marriage. His son, Brett Icahn, manages a substantial portion of his father’s wealth.

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